Become a Friendship Pal

Hang out one-on-one with an English language learner from our program, getting to know each other, using English.  This helps the student practice the language, but it does more than that.  It helps the learner feel less isolated in a community where most people speak a different language and can help the person get to know the community and its inhabitants better.  Many of our students tell us the only Americans they dare to talk with are their own English teachers, even when they speak at an intermediate or advanced level.

Suggested time is one or one and a half hours per week.  Ideal initial meeting places include the public library, a coffee shop, or a well-populated park with benches or picnic tables.  As you get to know each other, you may feel comfortable visiting public places of interest, like the UI Natural History Museum, local grocery stores (You can help your pal learn what exotic Iowa foods are and how to use them, help demystify the checkout experience or our weights and measurements system.  If you visit an ethnic grocery store with foods familiar to your pal, they may be able to teach *you* about their foods and how to cook with them.  Some pals enjoy walking together and talking while getting some exercise in a park (Terry Trueblood has a 2-mile prairie trail around a small lake) or even downtown or on campus.  Some enjoy going to the Rec Center to play pool or ping pong or work out or engage in some other shared interest.  At some point, you might even consider visiting local attractions a bit further afield, like Wilson’s Apple Orchard, the Amish store in Kalona, the Johnson County Fair, Fossil Gorge, etc., but some pals will prefer just to continue meeting to chat in one spot.  What you would like to do is really all just up to the two of you and your interests.

This can be an opportunity for both you and your pal to learn about another culture and make a new friend.  If you would like to befriend a local English language learner, please complete the Friendship Partner Information form. Alternatively you can download, print, complete and email completed form back to us at pals@fcp-iowa.org.

Become a Volunteer

We have an ongoing need for volunteer teachers, aides, tutors, fundraisers, graphic designers, and more. If you’d like to get involved, please complete the volunteer application form. Alternatively you can download, print, complete and email completed form back to us at volunteering@fcp-iowa.org.


We have so many wonderful people to thank for the continued success of Friendship Community Project!

Thank you to Richard Koontz, Director of the Larned A. Waterman Iowa Nonprofit Resource Center for providing us with all the critical know-how for starting up a nonprofit.

Thank you to Pastor Chris Arch and the Good News Bible Church for providing us with classroom space for our English language classes and helping us get the word out in the immigrant community.

Thanks to our Board of Directors: Livia Centeno, Sylvia Dean, Kay Nebergall, Franco Pesce,  Susan Prepejchal